What is a DUI?
DUI stands for 'driving under the influence,' meaning driving under
the influence of drugs and alcohol. Specifically, however, a DUI only
applies to people under the age of 21 in Texas, those who are not old
enough to legally drink alcohol. Texas operates under a 'zero tolerance'
policy for minors who drink and drive. This means that if a minor driving
a motor vehicle has any detectable trace of alcohol on them, they can
be charged with a DUI. Therefore, if you are under 21 and are pulled over
after having as little as one drink, you can receive a drinking and driving
charge, even though you are not legally drunk. Instead, you are being
punished for the simple act of consuming alcohol under the legal age.
What is the Difference Between DUI and DWI in Texas?
DUI and DWI are both related to drinking and driving, but the distinction
has to do with age of the offender and the recorded BAC at the scene.
Here is an explanation of the differences between DUI and DWI in Texas.
In Texas, there is zero tolerance for under-aged drinking, meaning a person
under the age of 21 cannot drive with a BAC of any level. There can be
no detectable sign of alcohol in their blood in the least. If a person
under the age of 21 is breathalyzed and found with a BAC of as little
as .02, he or she can be charged with a DUI. On the other hand, if someone
who is at least 21 years old is breathalyzed and receives the same BAC
of .02, he or she will most likely be free to go, as long as no other
laws have been broken.
A DWI, which stands for 'driving while intoxicated,' is a much
harsher offense than a DUI, and this is reflected in stiff DWI penalties.
For a DWI, anyone caught driving with a BAC of .08 or higher is legally
intoxicated, and can be charged with the crime. However,
it is possible for a person under the age of 21 to be charged with a DWI
. If the under-aged driver’s blood alcohol content (BAC) is greater
than .08, the charge is upped to a serious DWI charge. To learn more about
DWI penalties in Texas, check out our
Texas DUI Penalties
A DUI is considered a Class C misdemeanor, and there are many penalties
for a DUI that can negatively impact your life, though there is no possibility
for jail time. For instance, you could be forced to pay
a fine of as much as $500
, and for young people especially, this can be a significant amount of
money to pay. Moreover, a DUI conviction could land you with up to
40 hours of community service
that you must complete within a certain time period. This can make juggling
school, a job, extracurricular activities, and hobbies, along with this
mandatory community service very difficult; not to mention, this can put
a significant strain on your social life.
It does not stop there, but a DUI conviction could require you to attend
mandatory alcohol awareness classes
–don't even think about trying to skip these, your attendance
will be recorded and any discrepancies noted by the court. Lastly and
probably most significant, if you are convicted of a DUI, your
drivers license could be suspended for up to 60 days
. This penalty will only further disrupt the life you have, making it hard
to get to school, work, and important social events.
As you can see, even though you will not go to jail for your first DUI
offense, there are many other consequences that can negatively impact
your life in more ways than you can imagine. As a young person under 21,
you probably have a lot on your plate; you definitely do not have room
for the repercussions of a DUI charge.
Are You Being Charged with a DUI in Austin?
Young people are bound to make mistakes; it is simply a part of growing up. At
Carroll Troberman, PLLC, we understand this. We are compassionate and dedicated
attorneys who want to help you. We do not want you to experience the limiting effects
of a DUI on your record because of one irresponsible mistake. Remember,
you do not have to live with a DUI on your record.
Do Not Waste Time
It is important to act quickly because you only have 15 days from the date
of your arrest to request a license hearing, which is a chance to contest
the suspension of your drivers license. Contact a criminal defense attorney
as soon as possible following your arrest so you can request a hearing
in time and possibly keep your license. Also, seek legal aid soon because
your lawyer will need time to compile the facts and form your case. The
sooner you call
Carroll Troberman, PLLC, the sooner we can begin building a defense and the sooner you can get
back to your life.
Don't Settle For a DUI: Contact an Austin DUI Attorney
When you have been charged with a DUI, you need legal defense you can count
on and trust to protect your rights. At
Carroll Troberman, PLLC, we care about our clients and have legal expertise to negotiate your
case quickly. Our attorneys handle DUI and DWI cases and have an extensive
knowledge in plea bargain details and complex administrative procedures,
an expertise that is necessary for the best possible outcome. With an
experienced attorney with knowledge of the system on your side, there
is a possibility that your penalties could be reduced, or your case even
Both of our attorneys,
Blair Carroll and
Meredith "Shelly" Troberman, have strong working relationships with prosecutors and judges in the
Travis County Court. In recognition of his extensive work in DUI and
DWI defense, Blair has been accepted into the prestigious National College of DUI
Defense. Together, Blair and Shelly can aggressively fight for your rights
and get you back on your feet.
Give Us a Call Today
You will not be disappointed if you choose
Carroll Troberman, PLLC; our lawyers are the best of the best when it comes to defending Austin
DUI and DWI charges. Remember, the outcome of your charge truly depends
on the criminal defense attorney you work with.
Contact Carroll Troberman, PLLC today to schedule a free consultation with one of our professional Austin